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Meet the Food Safety Leadership Team

Meet FoodHandler’s Food Safety Leadership Team: Jeannie Sneed, PhD, RD Dr. Sneed has been an educator and researcher in foodservice operations and food safety for over 30 years. She retired as a professor and administrator from Kansas State University where she also served as a research professor for the Center of Excellence for Food Safety Research in Child Nutrition Programs funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. NSF International awarded her the Lifetime Achievement Award for Food Safety Education and Research in 2007. She holds a PhD in foodservice management with a minor in organizational behavior from The Ohio State University. Catherine Strohbehn, PhD, RD, CP-FS Dr. Strohbehn has been an educator and researcher in the areas of foodservice management and food safety since 1986….

Announcement from FoodHandler’s Sales Manager

We are pleased to announce that our new food safety consultants—Dr. Jeannie Sneed and Dr. Cathy Strohbehn—will be writing blogs twice each month, on the first and fifteenth. Their goal is to make these blogs relevant, and to continue conversations about food safety among foodservice operators. We invite you to contact them to ask questions, share success stories, make suggestions for blog topics, or provide other thoughts you have about food safety. You can email them at foodsafety@foodhandler.com Margie Wiemer Sales Manager

FDA has released the newest version of the Food Code

Blog by Lori Stephens based on the new FDA Food Code release. The FDA has released an updated version of the federal Food Code – Food Code 2017. What is the Food Code? The Food Code is a set of requirements based on science for preparing and serving food. The Food Code documents the best ways to prevent foodborne illness and injury.  It provides guidance for restaurants, retail food stores, vending operations and food service operations, including those in schools, hospitals, nursing homes and child care centers.  By following the requirements in the Food Code, these operations can eliminate the most important factors that can cause food safety hazards. The FDA provides this document to the food industry as a tool.  It is a very…

Stocking Your Food Safety Toolbox

Blog by Lori Stephens, based directly on SafeBites webinar by Dr. Jeannie Sneed, PhD, February 2018 There are five main contributing factors that lead to foodborne illness.  Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, or CDC, data related to actual foodborne illnesses, these five factors contribute most to outbreaks: food from unsafe sources inadequate cooking improper holding temperatures contaminated equipment poor personal hygiene All of these factors are preventable, and some can be prevented by using the correct tools to monitor our food production and service processes. Tools for your Food Safety Toolbox: Control Factors Temperature Control: This is one of the most important food safety practices in any foodservice operation.  Food can be a source of pathogens that can make people sick. …

Stay On Top of Food Recalls

Food recalls in the national news have been grabbing some priority headlines lately. Actually, it’s a continuous public health issue involving some kind of contamination, mislabeling, undeclared food allergens, or tampering.  Every month several foods are being recalled that we as food industry professionals may not always be aware of. Past lists have included food ingredients from China, peanut butter, meats, poultry, seafood, canned chili, produce such as spinach and tomatoes products. Big brother – meaning the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and U. S. Dept. of Agriculture (USDA), are kept pretty busy on such incidents to influence companies selling or producing these foods to get them pulled back out of the marketplace. So what exactly triggers a recall and how can a food manager…

Greens & Spinach – Please Lettuce Be Safe to Eat

According to the new food nutrition pyramid, we are to eat at a minimum, around 3 cups of dark green vegetables along with other servings of fruits and vegetables each week. That is becoming more difficult as outbreaks such as E. coli 0157:H7 creates bad news for the produce industry, not to mention the victims. What is E. coli bacteria?  The E. coli O157:H7 is what we call a low dose bacterium (very few organisms can cause illness for high risk people) that causes diarrhea that is often bloody; the diarrhea can be accompanied by abdominal cramps. Fever may be absent or mild. Symptoms usually occur within 2-3 days following exposure, but may occur as soon as 1 day following exposure or up to one…

Refrigeration Tips to Keep Your Food Safe

A refrigerator is one of the most important pieces of kitchen equipment for keeping foods safe. In a food service environment, our existence depends on the cooling equipment. The science of refrigeration has evolved from prehistoric times when man found his wild game would last longer packed in the coolness of a cave or packed in snow.  Our ancestors harvested ice to keep food cold. Now, if the power goes off, we are instantly reminded of the refrigerator’s importance to our daily life, at home and certainly in a food service facility. How Cold is Cold Enough? Cold temperatures keep harmful bacteria from growing. Amazingly, bacteria in perishable foods can increase in numbers by doubling in as little as 15-20 minutes. In just a few…

Food Service Hand Hygiene: Basic Handwashing – Part II

Ignoring handwashing as a priority is easy until faced with a crippling lawsuit. Your risk of transmitting a foodborne disease via a food workers hands will never be zero, but the good news is training your crew about handwashing is not complicated. Molding behavior to do it at the right time, using the correct method is the tough part. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention says the single most effective way to stop the spread of infection is through handwashing. Last month’s article was on the physical equipment to help get better handwashing compliance. The most important part is the practice of the basic handwashing steps: 1 WET HANDS FIRST before applying soap–Turn on warm (approx. 100°F) water –the most sanitary faucet is a hands-free…

The Physical Elements of Food Service Hand Hygiene – Part I

September is National Food Safety Education Month and the theme has a rhyme to it – “Keep Hands Clean with Good Hygiene”. Hand washing is one of the public’s best defenses against the spread of both common and rare, even life-threatening, diseases including those caused by food, and against gastrointestinal infections caused by such organisms as the Norovirus, which plagues the cruise ship industry and food service in general. Unfortunately, it’s not just as simple as saying I wash my hands like my mamma told me to. Every hand washing study out there shows that hand washing compliance is somewhere between 50-85% actually doing the deed—not very good news. Food service managers must consider all the hand hygiene elements and work to keep them in…

The Incredible, Edible Egg Safety Quiz

This nutritious, delicate food is a part of many food service menus as a main course and one of the most common ingredients. The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture says Americans consume an average of 234 eggs per person per year. Eggs have also been the source of some significant foodborne outbreaks in the U.S. from one specific type of Salmonella. While eggs are an important source of protein in the diet, an estimated 1 in 20,000 eggs in the U.S. supply will contain the SE (Salmonella Enteritidis) bacteria and can cause illness if eaten raw in foods or not thoroughly cooked before consumption. Egg Safety Practices — Because eggs can become contaminated internally from the hen, common egg-handling practices are now considered to be unsafe….

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